Posted on | February 6, 2012 | 38 Comments
‘Gaze upon my cosmic crotch in awe, earthlings!’
Let me be clear: I never cared much for Madonna’s épater le bourgeois act when she was still considered the hottest thing in show business, dating Sean Penn and making headlines with her various “what-will-she-do-next” stunts. Judged strictly as a musical act, I thought she peaked with her first album — “Lucky Star” had a nice dance beat and a catchy chorus — and after that, she became obsessed with the idea that she was a daring avant-garde figure, a historic personality pushing the envelope with each new MTV video.
There was a vast publicity machine dedicated to promoting Madonna’s delusions of artistic grandeur, but I never bought into the hype.
Music should be about music. Madonna became all about image, and her image-mongering finally jumped the shark in 1992 when she published Sex, a book featuring “artsy” nude photos of her, timed to coincide with the release of her Erotica album.
The album sucked, and the book . . . meh.
She just wasn’t that hot. So if most American were already bored with Madonna 20 years ago, why would we want to watch her prancing around and lip-synching her old songs at age 53? Were the producers of the Super Bowl just trying to prove that the NFL — which has previously featured other geezer acts like the Rolling Stones in their halftime shows — isn’t guilty of sexist age discrimination?
What next for the Super Bowl? Irene Cara singing “Flashdance”? A halftime reunion show for Kajagoogoo or Culture Club, with maybe a guest appearance by Adam Ant singing a duet with Boy George?
The ridiculous pageantry of Madonna’s show Sunday, with a cast of thousands and a budget bigger than any Cecil B. DeMille spectacular from the Golden Age of Hollywood, inspired me to scoff on Twitter, “Madonna needs to be careful. At her age, if she falls down, she could break a hip.” What I didn’t realize when I made that wisecrack was that she nearly did exactly that:
It’s one thing to bring back Golden Oldies acts for a nostalgia trip. But Madonna the Menopausal Sex Goddess, writhing around as if she were still the same 24-year-old whose bellybutton-baring midriff tops inspired a teenage fashion fad? The precedent is disturbing.
Fifteen or 20 years from now, my grandkids might be watching the Super Bowl halftime show and asking, “Grandpa, who’s that fat blonde lady in the funny-looking costume?”
Her name is Britney Spears.
“Grandpa, why is she wearing a plaid schoolgirl skirt and knee socks?”
Uh, well, you see, back in the day . . .
“Oh, gross! Did you see that, Grandpa? She flashed her panties!”
Yup. Same old Britney . . .
P.S.: Just in case you were tempted to feel sorry for Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, who lost a 21-17 heartbreaker to the Giants, remember that he went home with supermodel Gisele Bundchen. Loser? I don’t think so.